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Brunch in Kansas City?

Hello! I grew up in Kansas City, but it's been many years since I've lived there. My good friend is having a baby, and I want to throw her a shower/luncheon over Thanksgiving weekend. I was considering Lidia's, but we've been there several times, and I'm interested in trying something new. Someone I know suggested Panea Cafe, and the menu online looks pretty good. Though, I'm usually skeptical of fusion cuisine. Has anyone been there? I'm guessing it'll be about 10 people. Any suggestions are greatly appreciated!

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  1. Are you referring to Pangea Cafe? I've been to Pangea several times, and although the food has been well prepared, I've left hungry as have my dining companions each time. The portions sizes seem very small for the prices charged. I haven't been to any private functions there, maybe it's different for catering. The last time I was there I had what they called Tandoori Chicken, which wasn't remotely tandoori chicken. It was 11 bucks for very thin slices of chicken wrapped around short grain rice with a curry type sauce. It was more like a small plate that other places around town serve for 3 or 4 dollars less. It may be different if you are booking the whole place for an event. As I said, everything we've eaten at Pangea has been tasty, but very expensive and small portions.

    2 Replies
    1. re: zataar

      I agree with zataar's evaluation. I do like the food very much, but I have to be feeling "wealthy" on the days I go there. And I'm ready for dinner 30 minutes later. It's like Pangea is the appetizer.

      Besides, the environment wouldn't be what I'd want for a baby shower. Pangea is a cute little shop but it's in a new, otherwise vacant strip center; the space is smallish; order at counter and they deliver the food to your table (though for an "event," perhaps they'd be willing to give full table service if arranged in advance).

      1. re: KCJ

        Thanks for the replies. It looks like Pangea is out. Any other suggestions out there??

    2. I've heard RJ's Bob-Be-Que at 58th and Lamar in Mission has a really good Sunday brunch. I've only been there for lunch, but the prices seem quite affordable.

      1 Reply
      1. re: reenum

        We went there for brunch on Sunday, and it was absolutely terrific. Best biscuits and gravy I've ever had in a restaurant, bacon smoked in-house, pancakes were fluffy, eggs flavorful and cooked just right. Even the side of potatoes was excellent. I've not yet tried the BBQ, but the weekend breakfast is really wonderful. Definitely "country-style," both food and atmosphere, and very much into the Chiefs, so maybe not the best for this occasion, but a great choice for most others.

      2. I had an excellent brunch at Mama's on a recent visit to KCM


        Although, I don't know how you people eat like that being of a quite delicate constitution myself


        1. We live in Overland Park and our hands-down favorite brunch spot is the Bristol (135th & Nall). They have buffets set up in 3 rooms (seafood & salads, hot dishes, a made-to-order omlette station, waffle station and my personal favorite - a room for desserts!). It's a little more expensive (around $19/person I think) but it's always worth it. There's also a bloody mary bar with all the fixins.

          1. Someone at work today mentioned Cafe Maison at 63rd and Oak. The atmosphere would certainly be appropriate for a shower and the person who mentioned it said the food was very good.

            1. Despite this thread's title, if I'm reading correctly, the original poster is wanting a good weekend luncheon place that would be suitable for also holding a baby shower rather than just a place to go for weekend brunch.

              I can think of several good places for brunch but you might get the bums' rush from staff wanting to turn the table over and them not being real patient with lingering over the unwrapping of gifts and visiting when good friends get together for a special event such as this. I'm trying to think of a place that might be more amenable to that and also hold a special appeal for a group of young women.

              Perhaps arrangements could be made for a Saturday brunch at either Andre's (south of 50th & Main) or Annedore's Fine Chocolates & Coffee Shop (43rd & Walnut area). Maybe arrangements could be made in advance for the event at one of those places for a fixed menu -- maybe salads and quiche or some such plus beverages and desserts.

              Though I've not been there for a while and I've seen some mixed reviews here in Chowhound, a place similar to Bluebird Cafe (17th & Summit) would, I'd think, be appealing to a group of women.

              Also, Succotash (in City Market). I don't think Succotash is open on Sundays but maybe for a group of 10 or more she'd do a special Sunday brunch/lunch fixed menu deal for your party.

              How about Classic Cookie (on Gregory west of Wornall)? Again, I've not been there for some time myself but perhaps others have and could comment.

              Californos (off Pennsylvania, south of Westport Road)?

              Frondizi's (on Main overlooking the J.C. Nichols' horse fountain)?

              Plaidd - I focused sort of on the Midtown area or nearby because you'd originally mentioned Lidia's and Pangea, but if your guest-of-honor and other attendees are in the suburbs, maybe you'd like to find a venue closer to them.

              Also, if you are paying for it all, knowing your budget (or per person limit) might help, too. And if all the guests (except guest-of-honor) are paying for their own meal, it would be good to know what kind of price range you are looking at for this event so all the guests would be comfortable.

              What this town needs is a reincarnation of The Prospect (in Westport) and Westport Classic Cup which would have been my first recommendations if they were still around.

              3 Replies
              1. re: KCJ

                Thanks for the suggestions! Very informative posts. The majority of restaurants are all new to me. I guess I've been away too long. :)

                Andre's is an interesting idea. I've never been there, but my mother always raved about the desserts when I was growing up. I didn't realize they served lunch.

                How would you rate Frondizi's? Better than Lidia's? Italian is my favorite cuisine, thus making me picky. Actually, my last visit to Lidia's was only so-so.

                The guest of honor is indifferent to the type of cuisine. She'll be happy with whatever. Though, now that I think about it, I think I'd like to avoid a buffet. She'll be very pregnant by then.

                Most of the attendees are in Overland Park, but heading downtown or to the Plaza isn't a big deal. I will be footing the bill for this luncheon. My upper limit is $25/person.

                1. re: plaidd

                  Oh, my! I didn't realize until just now when I went to check Andre's internet site for hours that they have a venue now on 119th Street!

                  I knew the Main St. location has short lunch hours (11 a.m. to 2:30) but the new venue serves on Saturday from 10 to 5. That sure would ease the pressure of having to get out of their promptly if you wanted to linger a bit. And I know the Main shop really are nice but they really do want to hustle people on out after they eat -- I'd think especially so on the Saturday after Thanksgiving.

                  Fixed price $12.95 includes salad, entree, dessert and drink. Certainly within your budget. :) And they seem very amenable to special events. Maybe you could use some of your budget for nice little boxes of Andre's chocolates for each of the attendees placed at the table upon arrival.

                  Quiche, cheese pie and two other entrees are offered each day.

                  For more information, see the page on André's Rivaz Tearoom at:

                2. re: KCJ

                  I loved The Prospect. Our father took us there every Sunday. The lavash rolls were awesome and the pitchers of fresh squeezed juice... I can't believe we were just talking about it the other day and here someone revived this thread. I wish Westport in general still had the cache it once did.

                3. There is always the Webster House downtown which doesn't do a traditional brunch but is open beginning 10 am on Saturdays and does have a private dining room should the budget allow. There is also the Oak Room at 401 Ward Pkwy, inside the Intercontiental Hotel Kansas City at the Plaza, Kansas City, MO 816-756-1500 which does a terrific brunch lunch. Andre's could be another good suggestion. Grand Street Cafe you can relax and enjoy Sunday brunch, complete with freshly baked pastries. Located at 4740 Grand Ave. Kansas City, MO 64112 Phone: 816-561-8000. I've also always found the brunch at Lidia's to be one of the best in the city certainly a beautiful place to have a shower.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: jvergara

                    This is a good issue to bring up and update since it's been 2 1/2 years. I haven't been for brunch but I hear Avenues has a great one. Who else right now is oppering a great brunch in KC?

                    1. re: BurtonBailey

                      Easter is kinda a different deal than regular Sunday brunch (more expensive, different set up), but we're going to Room 39(Mission Farms) this year. I think they have it every Sunday. There's always Blue Stem. By the way, ouch on the Pangea reviews. Wendy is a good chef. I enjoyed her food. I did, however, think they should've eshewed quick-casual, moved out of the ghetto strip mall, upped the portions (and the prices), and had table service from the beginning. Hindsight is always 20/20. I think they were trying to have some quality of life in the crazy biz and that's always a challenge. RIP.

                    2. re: jvergara

                      Frondizi's has closed a while ago.
                      I would second Grand Street though. ALways one of my favorites and a menu brunch (which I prefer).

                      1. re: alsamuelson

                        Menu brunch @ Room 39 and Blue Stem. Pachamama's in Lawrence is doing menu brunch as well, but they only offer it twice a year- Easter and Mom's day.

                    3. this was a while ago... but since i'm researching the subject now... i thought i'd chime in.
                      i'm on a mission to review/taste the best brunches in KC right now.

                      def disappointed in Avenues Bistro in Brookside!

                      We LOVE Figlio's. That place is the best by far! I love the Vineyards in Weston, MO. I used to waitress there and the food is delicious!

                      I'm looking for buffets to be able to try multiple menu items and appease my dad... :) So, here's my list (i'd definitely appreciate any feedback or suggestions):

                      Webster House is this next Sunday. Yum! I've never been but I've heard great things!

                      Grand St Cafe (i'm disappointed tremendously that on the dinner menu they changed their classic House Chop... :( that was my favorite! but i'll give their brunch a shot)
                      Michael Forbes Bar & Grille
                      The Bristol
                      Lidia's (i love Lidia's! so very much but i've never been to their brunch... it's pricey... but i'm sure the quality is worth it)
                      Teller's (lawrence, i love this restaurant at dinner... i can only imagine how much i'll love the brunch)
                      Room 39 (leawood)

                      non-buffet style:
                      Succatash (i love this place but haven't been for brunch)
                      You Say Tomato (i love this place but haven't been for brunch)
                      The Fig Tree (lee's summit)
                      Blue Bird Bistro

                      Any other suggestions on delicious buffet's would be appreciated!


                      1 Reply
                      1. re: tashinacross

                        Glad to know about Figlio's - I have wanted to try it for quite a while. I have family coming in for Thanksgiving so we may give it a try. Have been to Webster House for brunch. The eggs benedict with the filet was so delicious and the shrimp and grits were very good. I am not a big fan of the decor or the atmosphere, but that is totally a personal taste thing - certainly nothing wrong with it. I thought Grand St Cafe's brunch was fine, but not special enough to go back. Love Bristol's, and Bluestem.
                        Even though I would like to support Fig Tree since i live in Lee's Summit and want more local restaurants and less chains, the omelet I had was similar to a Denny's omelet - not that great.